#ClubDesigns is a series of articles on the Storytelling blog and a series of posts in the Storytelling Beading Club on Facebook.
“Since the beginning of the first COVID-lockdown, we bead together every Friday, to make sure that #NoOneHasToBeadAlone.
We bead a different jewel every week – designed specifically for the workshop. Afterward, it’s really fun to see all the variations beaders come up with! Not only colors differ, but very often a pendant becomes a brooch, a motif that was originally an earring is modified into a bracelet or a ring. Moreover, sometimes it happens that not all the bead shapes are available to someone – and she needs to alter the original design to make it work.”
The #ClubDesigns series is the collection of this beady wisdom.
March Challenge in Storytelling Beading Club on Facebook is about improvising. What does it mean? We pick our beads with closed eyes or ask our friends and family to choose them for us.
This was our third week this month. The first week – we picked one from the main bead components. The second week – we picked two and Third week – we picked three of our main bead colors blindfolded. I was so “lucky” two different bags stuck their labels together! I ended up having four completely different colors on my bead mat.
The real challenge is to figure out the rest of the beads for design, think outside our usual comfort zone, and try something new. It’s a fun adventure and we all learn a lot!
Bloom earrings design is faithful to its name
Erika prepared a beautiful pattern that comes out in a floral motif. It looks like a blooming flower. Beads create two layers in the center of the motif, one on top of another, and give the impression of petals. This motif works also well for pendants or brooch. You can connect more single motifs into a bracelet or necklace.
Click here for the beading tutorial!
- 5×8 mm Gemduo beads,
- Miyuki seed beads 15/0,
- Miyuki seed beads 11/0,
- Miyuki Delica 11/0,
- Miyuki Half Tila beads,
- ss16 / 4 mm Preciosa sew-on rhinestone,
- 15×8 mm glass drop in metal setting,
- 3 mm Czech fire-polished beads,
- 17×11 mm cushion-cut crystal connector,
- earring component.
- thin beading needle,
- Fireline or other strong and thin beading thread,
- bead mat,
- thread burner or scissors.
Let’s have a look at how our Storytelling Beading Club members coped with the challenge of choosing three main bead components with closed eyes.
Bloom earrings by Elena Lazovik, Christina Nordin Kilpeläinen, and Katja Foierl
Elena Lazovik – Earrings on the left side – says:
“This is a pair of my Bloom earrings made at #NoOneHasToBeadAlone session. I have honestly started them on the session. Three colors were chosen with closed eyes, and my main task and challenge was to try to combine two cold colors with very warm travertine color. Because of that it became an impressionist garden with many small colorful blooms. I have thought that the beautiful crystal rosettes in gold settings are ideal to use here.
Do you think the earrings are harmonious?”
Christina Nordin Kilpeläinen – Earrings on the top right – says:
“Bloom earrings. My middle daughter picked the Gemduo, Half Tila, and Fire-polished beads. This week I’m not surprised at all.”
Katja Foierl – Earrings on the bottom right – says:
“My Blooms. My husband picked the Gemduo, Half Tila and the Fire-polished beads with closed eyes. I started beading earlier and finished the second earring in #NoOneHasToBeadAlone session. Thank you Erika for this wonderful design
Each of our beady-friends decided to use a different shape of crystal connectors in a metal setting, and the drop for their earrings. Elena chose star shape with the drop, Christina used cushion cut and teardrop and Katja’s choice was a tiny crystal heart ended with a bezelled 8mm Preciosa chaton. Three beautiful, similar, and yet completely different results!
Bloom earrings by Sara Lilja
“Here are my Bloom earrings. Thank you so much for today ladies.”
Romantic Bloom earrings by Shirley Jones Moore
“Thank you so much for the lovely Bloom pattern Erika! I’m so thrilled at how my random color pick turned out! They look like a miniature flower garden to me.”
These earrings really resonated between members of our Storytelling Beading Club and I’m not surprised. Shirley’s random colors came out great and she added 8mm rivoli instead of the drop that is a perfect match with the main motif. Garden in bloom!
Sweet and joyful Bloom earrings by Marion Hentrich
“I joined the game in picking three colors with closed eyes. Again the red Gemduos made the game together with green Half Tilas and greenish turquoise fire-polished beads. Very Christmas like. To get away from this impression I went a little wild with the colors which is a hard exercise for me for letting it go and leaving it as it is.”
Indeed, these are very unusual colors for Marion. She accepted the challenge and made another amazing piece. Congratulations!
Blooming pendant by Diane Sawczyn
“Here’s my Blossom. I chose the Gemduos and Half Tilas randomly. Definitely not my usual colors but I like them this time. Somehow departed from Erika’s design toward the end but still retains her flair. It just begged for this gorgeous filigree and olive Ultra Suede I got from The Storytelling Jewellry site. I love those drops.”
Diane created a beautiful jewel by attaching the motif to the Aztec filigree and finished it as bead embroidery. The long glass drop pendant is decorated with a sew-on rhinestone what is a really nice detail. If you decide to use a pendant/brooch component on the back, you have two options for wearing it!
Bloom Earrings with crystal drops by Ellinor Hellhoff and Mariëlle Breedeveld
Ellinor – Earrings on the left side – says:
“My first pair of Bloom earrings. I chose pastel aqua Gemduos, crystal vitrail full matted 3 mm fire-polished and matte metallic silver-grey Half Tila beads with closed eyes. Then I decided to go blue with the 11/0 Delicas and one of the 15/0s seed beads. I used a 6 mm two-hole cabochon in the middle. I got a little bit disappointed when the “lottery” gave me blue beads again. But the result is better than I expected.”
Mariëlle – Earrings on the right side – says:
“Lovely design and happy with my colors.”
Two different colorways and earrings were finished with adding a crystal drop pendant.
Earrings by Ulla Edenmark and Mehtap Uçar Spafford
Ulla – Earrings on the left side – says:
“The big rhinestone is leftover from the time when I shopped sequins and rhinestones in Khan elKhalili, the big market in Cairo. It is from a special shop of a bellydance costume maker.”
Mehtap – Earrings on the right side – says:
“Thank you Erika for your Bloom tutorial and the challenge to choose beads with my eyes closed I think my earrings became better than I could imagine .”
When I looked at pictures posted by our beaders, I looked for similarities in the beads they used. Ladies decided to finish their earrings with pearl drop beads. Later, when I read their stories behind the whole process I found Ulla’s comment about rhinestone she purchased on her travels. This makes her earrings a very special piece. Then I found another picture by Mehtap with beads she picked with closed eyes and I read about her concerns about the result. We see beautiful, and elegant earrings everyone loved!
Bloom Earrings by Kimberly Crawford Martin
“Bloom earrings. Summer and ice cream come to mind. I’m in love with my colors. Thanks Erika for another fun pattern.”
Another unique variation for this design. Kim attached the motif on filigree and showed us the new possibility for using (cushion cut) crystal in a metal setting. Thank you, Kim!
Adventurous Bloom earrings by Katalin Dudás and Sheri Chapman
Katalin Dudás – The Pendant and earring on the left side – says:
“My Bloom pendant. Seventy-six shades of red feat. Turquoise Thank you Erika!”
Sheri Chapman – Bloom earring on the right side – says:
“Thank you Erika for the beautiful Bloom design!!! This one I stepped out of my comfort zone a bit, and I like the results!”
The ladies worked with really challenging colors but managed to make the most of it. They found balance with adding a bezelled chaton (Katalin), cloisonne bead (Sheri), and drops. The result is great!
Springtime Bloom pendant by Deb Taylor
“I decided to make a necklace instead of earrings! Added a flower bead for the center instead of the sew-on rhinestone.”
There is so much fresh energy for the spring in this piece! Deb decided to make this pendant her own by using a large lampwork bead that matches the rest of the colors she used. She also attached a metal pendant of the spring fairy to the bottom and I love it!